What Foods Are Safe With Medication? 

 April 19, 2022

By  Linda Rook

Avoid Junk Food


You should take the medication that your doctor has given you.

Different drugs have a specific way of you taking them, for example, before food, after food or even taken on an empty stomach.

It is best to listen to your doctor or pharmacy and read the label so that you know how you should take the medication.

Taking drugs that need to be taken after food will help reduce the side effects of indigestion, ulcers in the stomach or feeling or being sick.

Taking your medication correctly absorbs the pills and capsules correctly and does not just wash away by the food and drink.


Do Foods Interact With Any Medication?

Yes, foods can interact with different medication.  It would be best to read the leaflet that comes with the drugs, as it will tell you which foods or drinks you can include. Or your doctor should advise you on the foods you need to avoid.

It’s also important to tell your doctor of any supplements or herbs and spices you may have.  As these also interact with some medication and increase your risk of side effects.

Below are some foods that can interact with medication:


Grapefruit and grapefruit juice has a substance that blocks the enzymes in the body. You have enzymes to break down certain drugs, so it can increase your drug levels in the bloodstream if they get blocked. Therefore, it increases the risk of side effects or even causes a new side effect.

The conditions of arthritis that you should be cautious of when having grapefruit are:

  • If you are taking colchicine, it can affect gout.
  • If you have rheumatoid arthritis and take rheumatic drugs such as DMARD specially ciclosporin.
  • Long term usage of antidepressants such as amitriptyline for long-term pain.
  • If you have Lupus, a form of arthritis or antiphospholipid syndrome or APS, you may be taking warfarin.
  • For long term pain, you could be taking carbamazepine. Or lastly, if you have some type of pain, you could be put on fentanyl.


Strong painkillers and antidepressants can increase some side effects like becoming more drowsier if you mix it with alcohol. The risks are more significant if you also mix alcohol with drugs, such as specific NSAIDs like ibuprofen or prednisolone steroids. The side effects could include stomach and digestive problems like bleeding.

No alcohol with drugs

Research showed that taking methotrexate, which is in the DMARD group, could drink 14 units a week if you are an adult. But having both can affect your liver, so you should drink in moderation if you take this drug.

Vitamin K.

Vitamin K is taken to thin the blood and prescribed to you for several reasons, including Lupus or sometimes after surgery.

If you have a prescription for vitamin K, you should avoid changing the amount you have in your diet whilst taking vitamin K. Vitamin K can is found in Kale and spinach.

What To Do when Food and Medication Making You Sick.

Unfortunately, some medicines can have side effects like feeling or being sick. But some foods can decrease the feeling of unwell or nausea.

The following food could help you if you are feeling nausea.

  • Sipping cold drinks – water can help you if you are dehydrating, especially if you have been sick. Fizzy drinks can help better than just water. Try and sip lemonade.
  • Sipping hot drinks – people have found that ginger or peppermint tea is also good.
  • Eating ginger biscuits helps with sickly feelings. Also, eat small regular meals if you feel unwell, and eat slowly.
  • AVOID eating spicy, fried and greasy foods. Eating these can upset your stomach even more.
  • You need to eat dry foods like crackers and dry toast. Don’t drink with your food either, as this can make you feel worse.
Dry Foods Toast

Other Conditions.

You MUST consult with your specialist if you need help when you have more than one medical condition, if you have arthritis and diabetes problems, or if you have heart or circulatory system problems.

First of all, it could help you reduce the saturated fats in your diet and eat more oats, nuts (if not allergic) or soya milk.

I have arthritis and IBS, so I am very conscious of what I have to eat or drink. Therefore I stick to ‘free from’ foods or gluten-free, which helps my IBS and the pains I am in with my osteoarthritis.

I also follow the Mediterranean and dash diet.

Foods To Cut Out.

You should cut out altogether foods and drinks high in sugar; these could be fizzy drinks, cakes, yes, sorry, those lovely doughnuts and biscuits are out.

Certain breakfast cereals are also high in sugar.

Putting it in a nutshell, ‘all foods that give you tooth decay and increase weight.

Salt can increase your blood pressure, which leads to cardiovascular disease. So, you should have only 6 grams a day for an adult. But be careful as about three-quarters of six grams is in bread, soups and sauces from the shops.

Balance Diet.

A balanced diet means how much we eat and the type of foods we eat. Keeping a healthy weight means eating the quantity of foods equal to what activities you can do.

The following diets can help keep your weight correct for you and healthy.

Mediterranean Diet.

The Mediterranean diet is helpful for those with some types of arthritis and is similar to what the UK recommends.

The Mediterranean diet contains eating less or no processed foods and red meat and more of the following:

Olive Oil
  • Oils - only Olive Oil or Rapeseed Oil.
  • Lentils - Peas and beans.
  • Nuts and Seeds - if you are not allergic.
  • Cereals - Wholegrain.
  • Fruit and vegetables.
  • Poultry and Fish.

To help with your inflammation and increase your antioxidants, you should eat a range of coloured fruit and veggie.

If you need any more help, go to Mediterranean and Dash Diet website were you will find more information.

The Vegetarian & The Vegan Diet.

These days, more people go for vegetarian foods; this could be for personal reasons like religion, ethics, or just getting healthy.

Vegans don’t eat meat and fish either; and they don’t eat dairy products, eggs, or other animal products.

Yes, eating plant-based foods has lots of benefits, but they will not be getting enough nutrients that we obtain from animal products.

If you are thinking of changing your diet, it would be advisable to see your doctor or dietitian beforehand to ensure that you will be getting enough nutrients you need.

Fasting for religion.

Fasting is a routine that is undertaken for spiritual or religious purposes.

When you have arthritis that may need medication four times a day with food and fasting through personal choice, you should speak to your doctor or rheumatology team, pharmacy, or your religious leader for advice.

The healthcare may recommend you change the timings or doses of those medications; they can also advise you if it’s safe.


When you have medication every day due to arthritis or other conditions, you may need advice from your doctor or pharmacist on which foods to take with your medication.

Because some prescription drugs can cause sickness with certain foods.

Having a good diet can help you get healthier and reduce those pains and inflammation; it also will reduce your weight.

But you should also exercise. I know it’s difficult, but your joints will become more mobile.

I hope this article has helped you. Please subscribe to my website, and I will keep you updated on new blogs. Also, if you need to know anything about arthritis, please go to my contact page and leave a message, and I will get back to you.

In the meantime, if this post is informative, I’d be very grateful if you’d help your friends or family if they have a similar condition to tell them. So please share it on Twitter or Facebook or send them an email.

I am not a medical professional, and this blog is for information only. If you have any worries you should consult your doctor.

I hope this blog has helped.


Linda Rook

Linda is now retired and has suffered from Osteoarthritis for about 40+ years.  She struggled with her weight until she found the correct one that also helped with her arthritic pain.  Linda was in terrible pain until the physician thought her right hip needed replacement. 

Now Linda has an artificial right hip, which has left her with the left leg shorter than the right.  Therefore, her spine is now wonky, and has arthritis of the lower back, also it seems to be going all over the body, her pain is now in the knees, elbow, wrist, fingers and both hips.

Linda now spends her days writing information to help others with the same conditions, so they do not suffer like Linda.

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